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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - SAULIEU, France — An international donor conference on Lebanon on Wednesday raised over $357 million in aid required to meet the country’s humanitarian needs, one year after the massive explosion at Beirut’s port, the French presidency said in a statement,
The donor conference, which was organized by France and the United Nations, was meant to show support for the Lebanese people, French President Emmanuel Macron said.
Taking a lead, French President Emmanuel Macron pledged 100 million euros ($118.6 million) in humanitarian assistance and US President Joe Biden, who addressed the conference in a video message, pledged to give $100 million.
Paris will also send 500,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines for the country.
“Today I’m announcing nearly a $100 million in new humanitarian assistance," Biden told an UN-backed donor conference for Lebanon led by France.
“But no amount of outside assistance will ever be enough if Lebanon’s leaders do not commit to do the hard but necessary work of reforming the economy and combating corruption," he said.
About 40 heads of state and government, diplomats, and heads of international organizations have taken part in the conference, according to Macron’s office.
Participants included Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah El-Sissi, King Abdullah II of Jordan and European Council President Charles Michel.
Lebanon’s current humanitarian needs have been estimated by the U.N. to be at least $357 million. Aid will focus on food, schools, the health sector and clean water supply, Macron’s office said.
Lebanon is going through the worst economic and financial crisis of its modern history, and a political stalemate that has kept the country without a functioning government for a full year. — Agencies
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